People become alcoholics for a reason

… and it isn’t because they are ill

They had been happily married for 30 years until the accident. After satisfying careers – Marilyn as a dental nurse and Ray as a fireman – and bringing up three children, they were enjoying their retirement. Both did voluntary work, Marilyn in a charity shop and Ray as a mentor at the local secondary school. They didn’t have a lot of money but enjoyed long rambles in the countryside, as part of a local group, liked to socialise, and relished spending time at their allotment.

Then, four years ago, Ray had an accident in which his right foot was badly crushed, preventing him from being able to stand for long, and certainly not able to go on the walks that they had so enjoyed. Soon afterwards, he gave up the mentoring, because he found it a struggle to get around the school.

“They would have come to some accommodation, if he had asked, as they really valued his contribution,” she said, when explaining the situation in our therapy session, “but he was adamant. And he gave up on the allotment as well, even though I wanted to take a folding chair with us, so that he could do his bit sitting down. No, he wouldn’t have it.

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